How To Replace A Tarp On A Roll Off Truck?

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A roll off tarp system is an excellent investment to cover loads transported in roll off containers or trailers. American Tarping carries a variety of roll off container tarp systems from top industry brands, including Donovan Tarp Systems, US Tarp, Aero Industries and Pioneer, in several styles and price points to suit our customers’ needs

In addition to roll off tarp systems, we carry a full line of replacement parts and roll off tarps for each of these systems. If you are unsure of the part you need, or if you don’t see it listed on our site, we can help you find the part you need by calling us at (786) 708-6662 or emailing us at

Types of Roll Off Tarp Systems

There are several types of roll off tarp systems, including fixed or telescoping gantry, single- or multi-axle, and container or trailer systems.

The tarp installation process will vary depending on the type of roll off tarp system you have, as well as the tarp system manufacturer.

You should always refer to the manufacturer's instructions for your tarp system. Links to manufacturer-specific instructions are included in the Additional Resources section below. We've included generalized steps for how to replace a tarp on a roll off truck. If you are installing a tarp on a new roll off system installation, see the Additional Resources section for links to specific product manuals.

How to Replace a Tarp on a Roll Off Truck?

Before installing a replacement tarp on your roll off tarp system, it is best to refer to the documentation provided by the manufacturer. If you do not have the installation instructions for your particular tarp system, you can refer to the general roll off tarp installation steps below.

  1. Remove tarp spool and detach old tarp.
  2. Lay the new tarp out on the ground, placing the reinforced side down. Make note of which end has the tarp roller pocket. This is the front of the tarp that will attach to the tarp tube.
  3. Place the tarp roller assembly on top of the tarp, at the rear (opposite the tarp roller pocket). The driver side of the roller assembly must be placed on the left side of the tarp. 
  4. a) If attaching with screws:
    Align the center tarp grommet to center of tarp roller. Starting in the center and working outward, attach tarp to tarp roller with sheet metal screws, fender washers, and square nuts.

    b) If attaching with spline:
    Slide the tarp spline into the groove in the roller bar. Make sure the center of the tarp aligns with the center of the roller shaft 
  1. Roll the tarp roller together with the tarp from the rear to the front, making sure tarp flaps are on the bottom (if flaps are used), and that the tarp is wound evenly onto the roller.
  2. Reinstall tarp spool, allowing 6-8” to hang below the tarp roll base rest. 
  3. Follow manufacturer instructions to wind the tarp spool to add tension.

Additional Resources:

Please refer to the links below for model- and manufacturer-specific instructions for installing a replacement tarp on your particular roll off tarp system.

Step-by-step guides:

Installation / Manuals:

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